A super weekend at Darling Harbour listening to a range of speakers talking about ‘the king in the car park’ who of course has risen to prominence for that very reason after 500 years.  Did he or didn’t he?  We’ll never know for sure, but on available evidence and based on logic it seems highly unlikely that Richard murdered the princes in the tower.  Prisoners in the dock should rather include cohorts of Henry Tudor who (as Henry VII) had every reason to want the princes out of the way in order to strengthen his (somewhat dodgy) claim to the throne.  It was moving to hear quotes from those people of the north who knew Richard best, and who thought him a loyal and honourable man who did much to set in place good laws and strong governance in a country that had foundered under the dozy Henry VI and then Richard’s brother, the pleasure-loving Edward IV.  Congratulations to the organisers and to the presenters who gave us such a wide range of interesting topics to both inform and challenge us.  Several highlights include the armed knight (all that polishing of plate!) who gave us such an insight into medieval warfare and armour; to Chris Puplick for his thoughtful historical overview of four ‘invasions’ of England: Roman, Norman-French, Tudor and Germanic (under William of Orange); and to Helen and Denise with their ‘who said that?’ quiz followed by a most moving account of the discovery of Richard’s bones after all these years – and of course they’re still not at rest:  Leicester or York?  Who will win the prize??   We should know the answer to that question by the time the next convention comes around (New Zealand in 2015).  We continue the Richard III theme at the meeting of the Plantagenet Society this coming Saturday, July 20th 2 pm at the meeting room at Hornsby Library for a talk on Richard III – and some other Plantagenets – as portrayed in film. Should be interesting and fun, even though I suspect the anti-Richard arch-propagandist, Shakespeare, will be the main feature!

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